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The Brew-History Review 2009-2011, Turned out nice again din’t it!

AG #68Trashy Black
My best Black IPA to date, a work-up of the Trashy Blonde recipe.
AG #66Centennial Blonde
Just an easy drinking tasty beer trying to emulate Mallinsons Centennial.
AG #64Mild Ale II
To brew again with a better yeast than Windsor, Windsor sucked Donkey wanger big time!
AG #63London Porterish II
This was a tweaked re-brew, brilliant fresh, tailed off for a few weeks then came back on form as the dark malts settle down and meld together.
AG #60Nelson Weizen
To brew again with better fermenter temperature control and a bigger yeast pitch, possibly a different Whitelabs strain.
AG #59Schwarz IPA
A bit of a mad experiment that might not be everyones cup of tea, German hops pretty much all the way, in my opinion it worked, a break from the American hops, Das Hopfen alles zusammen.
AG #56C.N.S Hops²
Bloody good beer, maybe brew it again with a bit less crystal / cara malts but I know this added to the juicy fruit of the hops.
AG #55Imperial Smoked Porter
Bag-ends and odds ‘n sods, tastes great, would add more smoke if done again, Drink fairly fresh while the smoke is still smouldering.
AG #54C.C.A.N
Bloody fantastic dry hopped loveliness, Chinook worked its magic.
AG #53Kölsch Wit
Totally marvellous Lager-a-like beer with Tettnang hops, a definite re-brew.
AG #52Half Wit
Nice beer, just needs the Coriander cutting in Half with some proper Whitelabs Wit yeast.
AG #51Double Oat Pale
The beer that made £65 for Charity at the NCB meet at Saltaire Brewery.
AG #46Phlegm
Nasty name but nice Belgian strong ale.
AG #45Trashy Blonde
A tweak on Sara Carter’s Trashy Blonde recipe, very good beer.
AG #44Liquorice & Treacle Stout
Dump or Double the Treacle,  this beer have a lovely tight head, very tasty.
AG #41London Porterish
Re-brewed with tweaks to try and emulate the Fullers London Porter in ‘London Porterish II’.
AG #39Mild Ale
Very easy drinking Mild with fruity English hopping.
AG #38Stateside Torpedo IPA
A mad-for it brew that really hit the spot!
AG #37Nelson Brucker
Tasty beer but took a while for maturity to play its part.
AG #36Imperial Amarillo Wheat
Mad beer, about half a kilo of Amarillo went into it, Brewdog-esque while fresh.
AG #34ORBY v1.2
Strong Ales category winner at the 2010 NCB Comp in Skipton. Excellent beer if I do say so myself.
AG #29Naked Imperial Stout
I only have one bottle left (17th Dec 2011) its a beer worth waiting for 6-12 months to drink.
AG #26Northern Blue
Classy English bitter based on the Coniston Bluebird theme.
AG #25May Day
This beer while fresh had a lovely floral note from the Mittlefruh hops.
AG #17Over-run by Yanks
Re-brewed with tweaks for the 2010 NCB comp, very nice as it is.
AG #16Once Were Warriors
Nelson Sauvin hops, can it be wrong? Of course not…
AG #14Black Promise
Black malt, smoothness and very drinkable.
AG #10Yorkshire Trappist Red
My first Belgian, it hit the spot.
AG #7Munich Blauer Vogel
Úber Bluebird, yet again a Coniston Bluebird kinda-clone.
AG #6Otter Dark Stout mkII
My re-brew of an Extract Stout I made, a solid tasty stout.
AG #3Fuggles Bitter
I’ll brew this again or something like it, you need a bit of Fuggles in your life from time to time.
Extract #6T’old Blotchy Duck
An odd mix that worked, I’m sure an All-Grain recipe would do it justice.
Extract #5Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby
Classy, not like the real-deal but very nice for an out-of-book recipe.
Extract #2Bramling Cross IPA
This really did have smooth bitterness and Blackcurrant, confusing and brilliant!
Extract #1Hop Back Entire Stout
Oh just brew a Hop Back Entire Stout, you’ll love it… Though I’m sure being about 6% helps 😉

Many thanks to the occasional drunken brew-monkey who helped out on a brewday 🙂

Trashy Black –  This is kind of an Up-scaled tweak on  AG#45 Trashy Blonde for the #BlackIPAoff with @Broadfordbrewer @BrotherLogic @MrFoleys
AG#45 was a pretty classy 4% beer so fingers crossed when this one is dry-hopped it will be nice and tasty.

Fermentables:
Pale Malt – 77%
Munich Malt – 10%
Caramalt – 5%
Wheat Malt – 5%
Carafa Special III – 3%

Hops:
Simcoe – 12.2 % @ 60 mins – 10g
NZ Cascade – 10.2 % @ 60 mins – 10g
Motueka (B Saaz) – 13.8 % @ 60 mins – 10g
Simcoe – 12.2 % @ 10 mins – 21g
NZ Cascade – 10.2 % @ 10 mins – 21g
Motueka (B Saaz) – 13.8 % @ 10 mins – 21g
Simcoe – 12.2 % @ 0 mins – 18g
NZ Cascade – 10.2 % @ 0 mins – 18g
Motueka (B Saaz) – 13.8 % @ 0 mins – 18g

Final Volume: 20 Litres
Original Gravity: 1.064
Final Gravity: 1.017
Alcohol Content: 6.2% ABV
Total Liquor: 30.7 Litres
Mash Liquor: 13.8 Litres
Mash Efficiency: 75 %
Bitterness: 75 EBU (Hop Utilization set to 25%)
Colour: 93 EBC
Mash: 66c for 60mins
Yeast: Safale US-05
Liquor: General Purpose Treatment

The Malts:
Image
Today’s Brewday is brought to you by Simcoe, Motueka & NZ Cascade hops:
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First Wort Hops and tiny common salt addition:
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The Mash at 66c:
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Running from mash tun into copper:
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The gorgeous smelling 80c steep hops, apparently the house was smelling extra Hoppy today:
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Break material clumping as the Wort cools, the wort was tasty and already displaying a good bitterness:
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Bit of a lazy start to the day then for some reason the hop-stopper decided to block and required some ‘Spatulation’ with the plastic paddle.
Yeast Pitched, in the fridge at 20c. I’ll be dry hopping this with the same combo of hops after fermentation.

*18th Nov ’11 – Dry hopped with 10g Simcoe, 20g Motueka, 20g NZ Cascade

*20th Nov ’11 – Dry hopped with 10g Motueka, 10g NZ Cascade

*Bottled 27th Nov ’11 – with 71g of sugar, I’m drinking the last pint out of the bottling bucket as it tastes too good to throw away. Tastes smooth 🙂
Think it could have stood to be a bit more black, it might be a Trashy Brown!

*25th Jan ’12 Hopzine review of Trashy Black, thanks Rob much appreciated

Building a 45 Litre Igloo Mash Tun

Each piece of the soldered manifold is made from 22mm copper pipe with un-soldered joints to allow disassembly and cleaning with a ‘cask tap cleaning brush’, the underside 1/3-1/2 of the copper tube is slotted with a 1mm Angle grinder disk.
The hole in the coolbox was made with a 21mm Q-max cutter, the tank connector was drilled out with a 15mm Blacksmiths drill (this would have been a lot easier with a Pillar drill and a Vice, but all I have is a crappy woodworking vice clamped to a wobbly table and a Cordless drill!)

Tools used were:
Pipe cutter
Solder, Flux, and Blow lamp
Round file
Flat file
Angle Grinder with 1mm Cutting disks
Scotch Brite pad
21mm Q-max cutter, with 8mm pilot drill
15mm Blacksmith’s drill
Cordless Drill / driver

Parts used were:
45litre Igloo coolbox
22mm Copper pipe
15mm copper pipe
6-off 22mm Equal Elbows
4-off 22mm Equal Tees
1-off 15x22x22mm Un-equal Tee
15mm Brass compression tank connector
15mm Brass Ball Valve

The Igloo coolbox which came from an ebay seller:
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Some of the manifold pieces cut and arranged:
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Soldered and separated:
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Soldered and attached:
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15mm Ball Valve tap fitted approx 11mm up from the inside base of the coolbox:
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Cleaned manifold:
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I found while fitting everything together that the Elbows were a bit more acute than 90 degrees which made it look all out of parallel, I fixed this by soldering it up with the removable end pieces on.
Everything was filled clean of burrs inside and out, excess solder removed, then scotch-brite pad used to polish up the copper. A thorough clean with a mild soda crystal solution gave it a final internal clean out. I later added a short bent turn-down spout from the ball valve with a 8mm reducer soldered to it.

Deuchars IPAwww.caledonian-brewery.co.uk
Time to pop my Cherry, Started at 8.30am, the Mash is now on at 9.20am 🙂 I’m going to do a 90 minute Mash and a Boil of 60 mins… which should hopefully time well with the Bacon & Egg butties for breakfast with the other half 😉 *so we can actually use the cooker and grill ‘cos its not got a fecking huge pan on it!* 🙄
I’ve just slightly over estimated my grain weights to be on the safe side as have I with the Batch Sparge volumes using DaaB’s Batch Sparge Calculator.

Fermentables:
Maris Otter Malt 2180 grams
Crystal Malt 105 grams

Hops:
Fuggle 9 grams @ 60 mins (FWH)
Aurora 9 grams @ 60 mins (FWH)
Willamette 9 grams @ 15 mins
Bobek 10 grams @ 5 mins
Fuggle 9 grams @ 5 mins

Copper Finings:
Protafloc Tablet – Last 15-20 Minutes

Predicted stuff:
Final Volume: 12 Litres
Original Gravity: 1.043
Final Gravity: 1.010 *final reading was actually 1010*
Alcohol Content: 4.2% ABV
Total Liquor: 18.5 Litres
Mash Liquor: 5.7 Litres
Mash Efficiency: 75 %
Bitterness: 33 EBU
Colour: 15 EBC

The Mash:
Recipe done in BeerEngine software www.practicalbrewing.co.uk and notes scrawled!
The original recipe came from www.hopandgrain.com
Most of the ingredients from www.barleybottom.com

Pre-heating the Mash tun with hot tap water, good pinch of Sodium Met treating the Hot tap water in the FV

Grain Temperature 18.5 Deg C

The Maris otter malt and Crystal Malt

Water at Strike heat and Grain ready to mash

Strike Temp, tweaked with a dash of boiling water as I decanted from the boiler with a jug and lost a few degrees

Starting Mash Temperature, Mash to last 90 minutes

All tucked up and monitored with a cheap Fish Tank thermometer from Dealextreme.com 🙂

Wort to the Copper:
End of Mash period, I actually went 15 minutes over the planned 90mins

Mash topped up and stirred ready for first runnings

First runnings, which are returned to the mash until it runs clearer (Which was at least 3 Litres)

Filling FV before transfer to boiler (Think you’d call this an Under-back)

Hops all weighed out, First Wort Hops, 15min hops, 5 minute hops and half a protafloc tablet

First Wort Hops with boiler filling

Spent grains

The Boil:
15 minute hop addition + Protafloc

5 minute Hop addition

The Wort (still hot)

Left overs (Still hot as I haven’t made an IC yet)

Safale s-04 Pitched once this had cooled down in the bath 🙂 Now its cooled I can really see the cold break forming as its gone all clumpy and is slowly settling.
All done, not bad for about 6 hours, not including cooling time as it will be a while sat in cold water in the bath 🙂
And all pretty stress free, I’m glad I have been doing some extract brews as its got me fairly confident with the boiling and hop schedules, the Mash was a piece of cake with no problems.

Lessons learned:
I need to do is calibrate all my buckets and my boiler pot.
It would be handy to have an IC.
HLT isn’t necessary for the moment.
Time to look into water treatment a little.
🙂

Mash details:
about 18-20 Litres collected @ OG 1022 / 62.1 Deg C

In the FV:
Final Volume was about right looking for my 12 litre brew length, maybe slightly more than planned which would probably be due to Sparge Volumes / 60 vs 90 minute boils.
OG 1026 / 72.8 Deg C *Actual OG is 1046, just a little higher than its supposed to be.

I think this makes my efficiency pretty good. 🙂

**Update** Bottled today 10th July 2009, tasted pretty good 🙂

My Stock Pot to Copper Conversion.

The Starting point was this, a Huge 38 Litre Aluminium Stock Pot:
The Huge 38 Litre Aluminium Stock Pot
I had this welded up at work, made from a 1/2″ BSP Stainless Steel barrel nipple from BES and a 3mm thick M22 Stainless washer from Stig’s Stainless Steel Fasteners:
Home made Tank connector
The 1/2″ BSP Female-Female Ball Valve came from BES and 1/2″ BSP-Compression Elbow was from B&Q, there is a brass 1/2″ BSP Female-15mm Compression fitting with another M22 washer on the inside of the stockpot holding the Tank connector in place:
Mounted Ball Valve tap
My Home made Hop Strainer (Hop Stopper), can drain down with a bit of a Pan tilt to 1 litre of dead space (*To be improved):
Hop Stopper
Outflow from the boiler via a piece of 15mm copper pipe (*slight redesign in order):
Outflow
Plan view of a re-design idea (*which I won’t need to use)
Redesign idea

* <<< Stuff marked with a star / asterisk:
The first drain down of the pot left about 1 Litre of liquid and I had to tilt the pan to get it to drain that far. I did some reading up at www.jimsbeerkit.co.uk and started looking into the ‘Syphon Effect’ and decided to stick some electrical tape over the top two thirds of the strainer (the bottom third of the holes are left open) holes and also reduced the internal diameter of the outflow pipe with a bit of PVC tube stuffed in the end. I did the same drain down test and found that it not only drained down faster but also only left 75ml of liquid in a level pan, no tilting necessary!
Now I just need to get a 15mm-10mm copper reducing fitting for the outflow pipe and solder up the top two thirds of the holes in the hop strainer. I’ll also drill some more holes in the remaining bottom third to as to keep a good open area.

Can’t wait for the next brew day now 🙂 I can’t help but think that I could half cool the wort via the outflow pipe now too if I just did a bit more coper pipe bodging and turned it into a counter-flow chiller!

My modified hop Strainer section, holes just in the bottom third of the tube, makes use of the syphon Effect:
Modified hop Strainer

Geordie lager kit – wheat beer with Saaz hops
Here’s the idea….
Take one cheap ass Geordie Lager Kit, some Wheat Spray Malt, a jar of Golden Syrup, some Saaz hops and Safbrew WB06 wheat yeast… and it makes a Wheat beer of sorts.

I’m going to do the following:

  • Boil up the Wheat Spray malt and 15g  Saaz hops for 40 mins
  • Maybe add 5g Saaz hops for the last 10 mins of boil
  • Add 5g Saaz hops at flame-out for a 5 minute steep
  • Tip the warmed Kit into the FV with the golden syrup followed by the hot spray malt and hops strained through a stainless sieve
  • Pitch re-hydrated Safbrew WB06 wheat yeast after aerating the wort lots
  • Maybe even dry hop the FV after fermentation has finished

Fingers crossed it should turn out like a nice hoppy wheat beer!? 🙂

The Ingredients:
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The Wheat Yeast rehydrating in a little boiled water and wheat spray malt:
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The Hops just gone in the pan:
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The 40 minute boil:
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Spent hops in sieve:
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FV filled with yeast Pitched at 22 Deg C after a good aeration:
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OG reading of about 1038:
img_9959

Hopefully this will get fermenting by tomorrow 🙂

**Update 7 days later**
Current Gravity reading of 1004 which should put the ABV at 4.46% I’ll bottle in the next weeks time. (Then maybe more Coopers Stout, or the Dark Ale) 😉

**Update 10 days later – Bottled**
01/April/2009 – I’ve just bottled my Geordie lager/Wheat beer, it went pretty well and made 39-off 500ml bottles and about 5-off 330ml’s too. Chipped a bottle slightly to just dumped the whole contents down the sink and threw the bottle, I’ve read about how bad fragments of glass are in your body!!!
Added just over 80g of household sugar to a 100ml sanitized jug of the brew and microwaved to dissolve the sugar for the priming in the bottling bucket. Bottled with my bottling stick, easy as! 🙂
I tasted a little and it was pretty nasty, nothing bad tasting and it certainly smells like an Erdinger… so its 7 days at 20 deg C now then at least 3 weeks (probably 4) at cellar temperature 11-13 Deg C approx.

**Update 19 days later – Sneaky Taste**

I’ve taken to filling a few 330ml Lefe’s when bottling, this way its easy to get a taste of whats conditioning / maturing without cracking open a full 500ml bottle.

Bearing in mind this has only had 9 days in the warm (20 Deg C) followed by a couple of hours in the fridge, its pretty good, the Safbrew WB06 wheat yeast has done its bit with the flavours with a yeasty estery taste, its lacking quite enough fizz but poured with a nice creamy head (3 or 4 more weeks in the cool should help), and I gave the last drop the customary swirl to raise the sediment so it looks like a wheat beer. The Saaz hops maybe aren’t coming through as much as I’d have liked, maybe the wheat and yeast are dampening it down a bit, but its still nice and dry and crisp 🙂

Fingers crossed, this will improve further, its one to do again 🙂


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